Continued from Tohoku University Develops 'Swallowable' Thermometer (1)

The thermometer moves from the stomach to the duodenum in 30 to 60 minutes. But it is charged while moving and can operate for about 10 hours, according to Nakamura Lab.

The temperature sensor embedded in the swallowable thermometer measures deep body temperature every 30 to 60 minutes and wirelessly transmits measured data. For wireless data transmission, it uses the 10MHz frequency band, which is not absorbed by the human body and has a high transmission efficiency, Nakamura Lab said.

Component cost of 100 yen or less at time of volume production

In addition to safety, Nakamura made special efforts to make the swallowable thermometer by using "withered" technologies to lower costs.

"We expect that the component cost at the time of volume production will be ¥100 (approx US$0.9) or less," he said.

The swallowable thermometer consists of four components: a temperature sensor, wireless communication function, customized chip and capacitor. For the manufacturing of the customized chip, a 0.6μm-process withered CMOS technology was used.

The swallowable thermometer (source: Tohoku University)

The significance of being able to easily measure an accurate deep body temperature is great. The thermometer can be used for (1) knowing ovulation cycles, which usually causes a large margin of error, (2) measuring the fatigue degrees of athletes, (3) preventing heat strokes and hypothermia, etc. Also, by knowing a biological clock, it can maximize athletic performance and adjust jet lag.

For the future, Nakamura Lab plans to conduct verification tests at hospitals, athletic fields, etc.

Original Japanese article